Determinants of optimal insecticide resistance management strategies

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Helps, J. C., Paveley, N. D., White, S. and Van Den Bosch, F. 2020. Determinants of optimal insecticide resistance management strategies. Journal of Theoretical Biology. 503, p. 110383.

AuthorsHelps, J. C., Paveley, N. D., White, S. and Van Den Bosch, F.

The use of insecticides to control agricultural pests has resulted in resistance developing to most known insecticidal modes of action. Strategies by which resistance can be slowed are necessary to prolong the effectiveness of the remaining modes of action. Here we use a flexible mathematical model of resistance evolution to compare four insecticide application strategies: (i) applying one insecticide until failure, then switching to a second insecticide (sequential application), (ii) mixing two insecticides at their full label doses, (iii) rotating (alternating) two insecticides at full label dose, or (iv) mixing two insecticides at a reduced dose (with each mixture component at half the full label dose). The model represents target-site resistance.
Multiple simulations were run representing different insect life-histories and insecticide characteristics. The analysis shows that none of the strategies examined were optimal for all the simulations. The four strategies: reduced dose mixture, label dose mixture, sequential application and label dose rotation, were optimal in 52%, 22%, 20% and 6% of simulations respectively.
The most important trait determining the optimal strategy in a single simulation was whether or not the insect pest underwent sexual reproduction. For asexual insects, sequential application was most frequently the optimal strategy, while a label-dose mixture was rarely optimal. Conversely, for sexual insects a mixture was nearly always the optimal strategy, with reduced dose mixture being optimal twice as frequently as label dose mixture. When sequential application of insecticides is not an option, reduced dose mixture is most frequently the optimal strategy whatever an insect’s reproduction.

KeywordsInsecticide mixtures; Simulation model; Target-site resistance
Year of Publication2020
JournalJournal of Theoretical Biology
Journal citation503, p. 110383
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Open accessPublished as non-open access
FunderChemicals Regulation Directorate (CRD) of the Health and Safety Directorate
Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online20 Jun 2020
Publication process dates
Accepted16 Jun 2020
PublisherAcademic Press Ltd- Elsevier Science Ltd

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